<< Home Page | Oxford (Gibbs) Index

Aesop's Fables, translated by Laura Gibbs (2002)

Perry 301 (Babrius 10)

A man was in love with an ugly, wicked slave-woman from his own household and was quick to give her whatever she asked for. This slave-woman, bedecked with gold and trailing a delicate purple robe around her legs, would pick fights with the master's wife at every opportunity. It was Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, whom she regarded as the cause of her good fortune, so she lit lamps in the goddess's honour, sacrificing, praying, begging, and beseeching her every single day. Finally the goddess came to the couple as they were sleeping. She appeared to the slave-woman in a dream and said, 'Do not give thanks to me; I certainly did not make you beautiful! Indeed, I am furious that this man would even think you were worth looking at.'

Note: An epimythium probably added by a later editor reads: 'Only a man who is out of his mind and hated by the gods delights in ugly things as if they were beautiful.'

Source: Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura Gibbs. Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.
NOTE: New cover, with new ISBN, published in 2008; contents of book unchanged.